Cartlidge Morland (A Firm) v Thomas [2011] EWHC 2086 (QB)

Judgment was handed down at the High Court on 30 September 2011 in the case of Cartlidge Morland v Thomas. Emmanuelle Ries and John Kenneally advised Gerard Thomas, the successful Defendant employee and instructed Simon J Brown of Crown Office Chambers.
The Claimant, a firm providing wealth management services, had sought a final injunction prohibiting the Defendant, a financial adviser, from soliciting or dealing with clients and damages for alleged breach of contract including an alleged failure to return confidential information.
In his judgment, HH Judge Anthony Thornton QC, rejected the employer’s claims and ordered that there be an enquiry on the cross-undertaking in damages and an assessment of the Defendant’s counterclaim in contract.   He found the evidence of the Claimant’s witnesses (three partners in the firm) unsatisfactory and unreliable, preferring the Defendant’s account as to the extent and scope of the restrictive covenants. He was critical of the evidence relied upon by the Claimant when obtaining the injunction before Openshaw J and discharged the injunction with an order that the Claimant pay costs on an indemnity basis.
For advice as to the drafting and enforcement of restrictive covenants in employment contracts, partnership agreements, equity plans or consultancy agreements, please contact Emmanuelle Ries or John Kenneally, partners in the Employment Team and Dispute Resolution Team at ebl miller rosenfalck.